I am thrilled to be hosting a spot on the Soul of Cinder by Bree Barton Blog Tour hosted by The Book Terminal Tours.
Check out my interview & enter the giveaway below!
About the Book
The Twisted Sisters are coming home.
Prince Quin has returned to the river kingdom, ready to spearhead a rebellion and reclaim the throne. He vows to destroy Mia, Pilar, and Angelyne if they oppose him—even if he must use his newfound magic to set the world aflame.
Across the four kingdoms, the elements have been tipped askew. Volcanoes erupt, glaciers collapse, and cities sink into the western sands. After losing Angie, Mia and Pilar journey to the glass kingdom to seek help, though soon their fragile bonds of sisterhood begin to fray. Mia’s sensations are creeping back, and with them, a deep and searing grief. Pilar, terrified of being broken, once again seeks comfort in her fists. But when they hear rumors of a misty island that promises to erase all pain, they suddenly find themselves with an answer—if they are willing to pay the cost.
As tensions mount, the sisters are drawn back to the river kingdom for a final reckoning with the boy they each loved. The shattering conclusion to Bree Barton’s Heart of Thorns trilogy challenges why we grieve, whom we love—and how to mend a broken heart.
Find it Here:
What was the hardest part about writing a trilogy?
Definitely the second book. Tears of Frost nearly killed me! I hear lots of authors decry second books as potential assassins, so I’m sure that was part of it. It’s also a pretty dark book, and I was in a pretty dark place while writing it. Sexual assault and depression are both part of my lived experience, and while I felt a powerful need to wrangle them onto the page, doing so was not all puppies and pancakes. What’s funny is that when I told a friend of mine, a fellow fantasy author, how much I was struggling with book two, she got very serious and said, “Look, Bree. I hate to tell you this, but for me the third book was an absolute nightmare. Having to pull all the threads together and bring every character arc to a close nearly killed me.” I remember thinking, WHY WOULD YOU TELL ME THIS?!?!
But honestly, after surviving book two? Book three was like an endless stack of pancakes with some puppies on top. It’s a book about healing, and writing it felt healing. I actually had a terrific time following each character’s story to a satisfying end. I hope you and other readers feel I’ve done them justice. I cried a lot while writing SoC. I guess I cried while writing ToF, too, but it wasn’t half as cathartic!
What can you tell us about being a ghost writer? How has your experience been different between ghost writing and having published this trilogy?
In some ways they are surprisingly similar. Whether or not your name goes on the finished book, you still need discipline, you still have to meet deadlines, and the book is never yours alone. It’s a million little gems you’ve stolen from other people—lines of dialogue pilfered on a train, a linguistic flourish filched from a writer you love, a character tic cadged from your best friend. Not to mention the fact that every revision is built on the vision and desires of your beta readers, then editors, then copyeditors, and so on. All of these people are ghosts, too, working behind the scenes to put their ghostly fingerprints on the finished product.
That said, I remember about ten years ago when I walked into a Borders Books (remember those?) and saw a book I’d ghostwritten on an end cap display. It was the strangest feeling, both pride and grief, seeing my own words with someone else’s name down the spine. Seeing my own name on a spine? All pride.
Now that the Heart of Thorns trilogy is complete, what are you working on now? Will we be seeing more books from you soon?
Thanks so much for asking! I do have a book coming out in 2022, but it hasn’t been announced yet. It’s not YA, and it’s not fantasy. Stay tuned… 🙂
What is your writing process look like? Are you a plotter or a pancer?
If you had asked me this while I was writing the first two books, I would have said the same thing: I’m a pantsotter. No, that is not an otter that wears pants. It’s someone who starts by pantsing, then moves into plotting. Basically I had to throw some words on a page to figure out what the story even was, and then once I started to get some momentum—could be twenty pages, could be fifty—I’d make a very loose outline of where the story could go. It might be a sentence or two for each chapter, just to give me a sense of what was possible. And I always always always wrote chronologically. I’d start every writing day by rereading what I wrote the day before (not the most productive way to work, imho), and only once I had those chapters aligned perfectly could I move forward.
That is, UNTIL Soul of Cinder! Since writing Tears of Frost had been so heavy, I felt like I really had to try something different for the last book. I read Lisa Cron’s craft book Story Genius, which was SUPER helpful, and inspired by her prompts, I wrote a bunch of disconnected scenes. Every day I’d sit down at my laptop and let myself write any scene I wanted. It was usually most fun/productive to zoom in on the high-drama moments, often some sort of reckoning between characters. Mia and Pilar. Mia and Angelyne. Quin and Pilar. Mia and Quin. Later I would stitch these scenes together, and of course revise them as needed. But being able to break the pattern and liberate myself from The Way I’d Always Done Things? It felt like throwing open the windows of my brain and letting the light pour in.
What are you currently reading? And what has been one of your top 2020 reads?
I just finished Pretty as a Picture by Elizabeth Little. Absolutely loved it! Next up is Such a Fun Age by Kiley Reid. As for my top 2020 read, I’d have to go with Take Me Apart, my friend Sara Sligar’s stunning literary thriller debut. It’s so rich and dark and deftly written. I blame Sara for kicking off my new obsession with thrillers. And by “blame” I mean “worship.” She’s the best.
3 lucky winners will receive a signed hardcover copy of Soul of Cinder by Bree Barton and additional goodies such as a candle, a bookmark, etc. Must have a valid US mailing address to enter the giveaway and must enter through the Google Form to be considered. One entry per email address.
We are also giving away a customized writing or poem from Bree Bartonon any topic of your choice! The prize will be delivered digitally to anyone outside of the US. Only one entry per email address. All participants must enter through the Google Form to be considered.
The US Giveaway: https://forms.gle/juvxpvZoqnWf2LYh6
International Prize: 1-3 international winners would get a poem written for them
International Giveaway: https://forms.gle/3PKsMyg1tWzqKXdeA
About the Author
Hi! I’m Bree Barton, a novelist, ghostwriter, and dance teacher in Los Angeles. My debut YA trilogy, HEART OF THORNS, comes out from Katherine Tegen/HarperCollins on July 31, 2018.
Mia Rose has pledged her life to hunting Gwyrach: women who manipulate flesh, bones, breath, and blood. But when she is forced to give up her knives and trousers to marry the prince, Mia discovers she has dark, forbidden magic—the very magic she has sworn to destroy.
Other books in the Heart of Thorns Trilogy
Tour Schedule – Bloggers
Starlight Reads – Review / Mood Board
Kait Plus Books – Guest Post
acciobooks – Review
The Clever Reader – Interview
Books in the Skye – Review / Fav Quotes
A Bronx Latina Reads – Review / Fav Quotes
forthenovellovers – Review
Avni Reads – Review / Fav Quotes
Tour Schedule – Bookstagrammers
@chroniclesofkayy – Creative Post
@alazyeggreviews – Review
@her.littlebookcorner – Favorite Quotes
@booklifey – Review
@book_worm_mummy – Review
@the.b00kreader – Review